A History of Asian-American Cinema

1INTRODUCTION TO ASIAN-AMERICAN CINEMA  Very little has been written about the involvement of Asian-Americans (and Asian-Canadians, also discussed here) in the production of film. Even though their contributions are usually overlooked, Asian-Americans have played significant roles in the formation of America’s film culture since the early 20th century. In the early silent era, before the … Continue reading A History of Asian-American Cinema

Xu DaRocha – Painter, Photographer, Chinese TV & Cinema Veteran… and Dumpling Lover

May is Asian Pacific American Heritage, an occasion I marked by seeking interviews with several Asian-American artists (like Roommate‘s Ken Lambert) and blogging about Asian neighborhoods and such… One interview I attempted to land was Chinese-American artist Xu Darocha, now giving a whole new meaning to the concept of “Asian time” by getting her responses to … Continue reading Xu DaRocha – Painter, Photographer, Chinese TV & Cinema Veteran… and Dumpling Lover

A History of Black Cinema: 1915-1969

The Lincoln Motion Picture Company In most American silent films, minorities were generally played by white actors in make-up. When actual minorities were cast, roles were generally limited. Latinos in silent films usually played greasers and bandits; Asian-Americans played waiters, tongs and laundrymen; and blacks usually played bellboys, stable hands, maids or simple buffoons. Early … Continue reading A History of Black Cinema: 1915-1969

Marking the end of an Eight Year Venture, or, My Final Post

The following entry originally appeared on the Amoeblog This is my last dispatch for the Amoeblog.   I started blogging for Amoeblog on 26 July 2007. In that time I created a few series for the Amoeblog: One Album Wonders (profiles of bands which only released one album), Brightwell’s Top 10 (my favorite tracks from the … Continue reading Marking the end of an Eight Year Venture, or, My Final Post

Red Wing and Young Deer, the First Couple of Native American Silent Film

Cast and Crew Members at Inceville in Santa Monica, circa 1915 Before the emergence of Hollywood and the studio system, moviemaking was something of a free-for-all, open to anyone that could afford it. In the US, that privileged group was almost exclusively white and male. Roles for minorities were usually crudely stereotypical, minor, and liable … Continue reading Red Wing and Young Deer, the First Couple of Native American Silent Film

Emily Ryan of Emily’s Sassy Lime — Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Interview

Emily Ryan is an artist/actress/DJ/musician who, in 1994, formed possibly the first all female Asian American rock group, Emily’s Sassy Lime, with sisters Amy and Wendy Yao. In 2002, she played James Duval‘s girlfriend in Jon Moritsugu‘s underground classic Scumrock. Eric Brightwell: Question 1: what other all Asian-American rock bands were there before Emily’s Sassy … Continue reading Emily Ryan of Emily’s Sassy Lime — Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Interview

Yellowface — Hollywood Chinese

Famed Asian-American rights activist Ngoc-Thu Thi Nguyen and I watched this documentary about depictions of Chinese in Hollywood film called … Hollywood Chinese. I love observing how Hollywood deals with all races and ethnicities. Sometimes it’s hilarious and sometimes it’s pretty appalling and then there’s the rare occasion on which it rings true, which usually … Continue reading Yellowface — Hollywood Chinese

Pan-Asian Metropolis — Japanese Los Angeles

Los Angeles was at one time home to the largest population of Japanese outside of Japan and contributions of Japanese-Angelenos to history and culture are many. It was in Los Angeles that Hollywood created the first Asian-American film star. It was also in Los Angeles that a legal challenge in the Supreme Court re-shaped immigration … Continue reading Pan-Asian Metropolis — Japanese Los Angeles

Pan-Asian Metropolis — Hi Duk Lee, the Father of Koreatown (1939-2019)

Hi Duk Lee (이희덕) died on 7 March at the age of 79. Two weeks passed before his death was reported on the website L.A. Taco. Only then did the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Korea Times, KTLA, NBC, and ABC run stories on the passing of this pioneer, whose name and accomplishments remain unknown to most Angelenos, including … Continue reading Pan-Asian Metropolis — Hi Duk Lee, the Father of Koreatown (1939-2019)